So far this steering box has been worth it. My wife drove my truck for the first time since replacing it. Even she was amazed at the difference and promised not to complain about the money I spent on it anymore!
The PS system does have a cooler (all be it little) but I don't think temps have much to do with the box going bad. According to the guys at Red Head it's just part wear and part high tolerances in manufaturing that lead to a sloppy handeling steering box after awhile.
I just realized in step 4 that I never gave this warning:
The clock spring can be damaged if you have the steering shaft disconnected and the steering wheel is turned to much in one direction. This is why it is important to immobilize the steering wheel as much as possible to avoid turning it.
It only takes a few revolutions of the wheel for damage to happen. It's easy to do when you are wrestling with the steering shaft. Also if the steering wheel is not centered lock to lock and you put everything back together you can damage the clock spring when you turn full lock.
I'm really starting to look into this now. I always have to hold my wheel slightly to the left because it will not track straight, and overall, the steering has a lot of wander to it. Very terrible.
The drag link can be adjusted to recenter the steering wheel. It make take a few tries to get it just right but it's simple to do. Loosen the two bolts in the adjuster and twist it one direction or the other to center the steering wheel. Retighten the bolts and go for a spin. Rinse and repeat as needed.
Originally Posted by Pinky Demon
Now that you've had it long term, what are you thinking?
So far it's worth every penny. Keep in mind I pretty much replaced everything else in the steering system (expect for pump) before replacing the box because there was so much slop in everything. The steering box was the biggest improvement.
You can try adjusting the steering box itself before going through the expense of replacing it. On top of the steering box is a lock nut and hex head bolt. Loosen the nut and turn the bolt 1/8 to a 1/4 turn. Tighten the lock nut back down. Go for a spin and see if that helps. You can do this adjustment a few times but you do not want to get the adjustment bolt to tight otherwise you can bind the steering box up. Also this is usually considered a band-aid for a worn out box.
Also you want check the rest of the steering system for issues. Check the drag link, tie rods and ball joints for slop and woren parts. Have the alignment checked and give you tires an inspection as well. Any of these or all these can be the root of your problem as well as the steering box.